The flag represents a fox, an animal closely associated with the county, and was first hoisted outside parliament in time for historic county flag day on Friday.
"It 's really happy and it ' s really nice to see the pride people take in it. I was amazed at the strength of the response "said Alicia Kearns, MP for Rutland and Melton, who helped run the campaign.
She embraced the cause when she was elected in 2019, working with local activists who have been fighting for the flag since 2013. “I just thought it was such a shame that we didn't have one. Our flags carry our history, they carry our pride, they help define who we are and they allow us to celebrate our communities, ”she said.
The flag, designed by flag lover Jason Saber, features a fox, which is featured on the logos of many county organizations and sports clubs, including Leicester City Football Club and the Leicestershire County Cricket Club, both known as Foxes.
The cinquefoil atop the flag, so called for its five petals, was used by Robert de Beaumont, 4th Earl of Leicester, and is now found on the civic coats of arms of several Leicestershire towns, said Saber, while the colors and zigzag derive from the shield used by local nobleman Simon de Montfo rt (c. 1205 -1265).
"My goal was to design a flag that would harmoniously combine the four traditional themes of the county " he said.
Activist Bill Brown, county chairman of the British Legion in Leicestershire, said he wasI'm not glad to see the flag in action. "I was in Parliament Square on Monday morning when they first lifted it, and I was absolutely blown away," he said. “Now we have something to hang our pride in. We were the last county to have a historic county flag, so it is quite poignant. He worked alongside Graham Shipley, professor of ancient history at the University of Leicester, to have the flag officially recognized.
The flags of counties vary in age, with a few hundred years and some introduced more recently, said Graham Bartram, the Flag Institute's chief vexillologist, which recorded the last English county flag. "The flag of Kent dates back to the Kingdom of Kent, so we are speaking before Alfred the Great," he said. "There is a whole range of ages.
He said that the county flags were created for êare flags of the people, and each has been designed to reflect the unique identity of its county in certain path. For example, the flag of Gloucestershire had cream to represent the Cotswold stone, he said, while the black and white flag of Cornwall was believed to be related to its tin industry, representing the ore black and white l.
"Flags are an incredibly powerful way of expressing identity," said Bartram. “Some people say, 'Oh, but that's just a piece of cloth. But it is a piece of fabric that people invest in. It is important to them. "